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Charles Robertson papers, 1941-1951 (majority within 1943-1946)

1.5 linear feet

This collection is made up of incoming and outgoing correspondence pertaining to Mary Flavin and her grandson, Charles A. Robertson of Albany and Berkeley, California, who served with the United States Army in Europe during World War II. Robertson wrote letters to Flavin about his experiences in Western Europe and received letters from Flavin and his fiancée, Naomi Watson ("Dee"), who wrote about her life in Oakland, California, during the war. Later letters pertain to Robertson's compensation from the Veterans Administration and to romantic relationships between soldiers. The collection also contains ephemera.

This collection (1.5 linear feet) mainly consists of incoming and outgoing correspondence pertaining to Mary Flavin and her grandson, Charles A. Robertson, who served with the United States Army in Europe during World War II. Robertson wrote letters to Flavin about his experiences in Western Europe and received letters from Flavin and his fiancée, Naomi Watson ("Dee"), who wrote about her life in Oakland, California, during the war. Later letters pertain to Robertson's compensation from the Veterans Administration and to romantic relationships between male soldiers. The collection also contains ephemera.

The Correspondence series, which comprises the bulk of the collection, is primarily made up of Robertson's incoming and outgoing correspondence, particularly during his military service. The earliest items are family letters and greeting cards to Robertson's grandmother, Mary Flavin ("Mother May"). From September 1943-March 1946, Robertson wrote letters to his grandmother and received letters from his fiancée, the Veterans Administration, and acquaintances. Between September 1943 and July 1944, he discussed his army training at the Presidio of Monterey; Camp Lee, Virginia; Fort Washington, Maryland; and Fort Omaha, Nebraska. From August 1944-April 1946, he wrote about his experiences in England, France, Germany, and Belgium with the 48th Machine Records Unit (Mobile), 29th Machine Records Unit (Mobile), and 65th Machine Records Unit (Fixed). He occasionally mentioned attending mass and communion and responded to family news, such as the death of his Aunt Lizzie. His letter of December 9, 1944, has diagrams of his quarters in a building formerly held by German troops and a cabinet, and his letter of April 10, 1945, encloses several German monetary bills. Some of Robertson's later letters are written on stationery with printed cartoons about military life. Flavin received many greeting cards for Mother's Day, her birthday, and other holidays throughout the World War II era. The collection also has a small number of letters from Flavin to her grandson.

Much of the series is comprised of letters and greeting cards to Charles A. Robertson from his sweetheart and fiancée, Naomi M. Watson ("Dee") of Oakland, California. She regularly wrote to Robertson about her work, social activities, and life in Oakland, particularly after he was sent to Europe. She reported news of her family and his, whom she occasionally visited or with whom she corresponded, and discussed their relationships and her hopes for their future. A few of her letters enclose newspaper clippings, often with cartoons about military life or photographs of herself and friends. In the spring of 1945, she celebrated the one-year anniversary of their engagement and V-E Day, which she hoped would lead to Robertson's quick return home. Her letter of October 29, 1945, has drawings of cartoon mice representing Watson and Robertson. Watson's mother sometimes wrote personal letters to Robertson, whom she referred to as a "son." One large group of newspaper clippings is enclosed with correspondence dated July 1945, and other enclosures include advertisements, telegrams, a program, and an invitation. Watson stopped writing to Robertson after February 1946, and later correspondence indicates that their relationship eventually ended.

Charles A. Robertson occasionally received letters from fellow soldiers and other acquaintances after the war. A group of letters from the Veterans Administration, including some drafts of Robertson's responses, pertains to financial compensation and to Robertson's health in the late 1940s. Charles F. Foley ("Chuck") wrote a series of letters to Robertson while stationed in Tokushima, Japan, with the United States Army in July and August 1948. He frankly discussed his reluctance to visit prostitutes, despite the threat of derogatory epithets from fellow soldiers, and mentioned the possible effects of giving up the "gay life" (August 7, 1948). Foley's later letters apparently went unanswered, and he ceased to write after August 25, 1948. Later items, dated as late as 1951, concern Robertson's financial compensation from the Veterans Administration.

Dee Watson compiled 2 Scrapbooks entitled "Army Life of Charles A. Robertson 1943-1946." The volumes have picture postcards, train timetables, travel ephemera (including guides and visitors' maps), souvenir folders, performance and church service programs, and newspaper clippings. Additionally, several items relate to a trip taken on a United Air Lines "Mainliner" aircraft. The postcards have images with humorous mottos, paintings of army bases and other locales, and photographs of army bases where Robertson was stationed. The clippings and other materials pertain to his service in the United States and Europe.

Most items in the Ephemera series pertain directly to Charles A. Robertson's military service, such as his service record and military documents. Among the printed items are a French/English dictionary, a religious pamphlet, newspaper clippings, and pocket guides to Paris and Birmingham. Other items include, but are not limited to, a record with a message for Mary Flavin from Robertson, name cards, and photographs.


Department of English Language and Literature (University of Michigan) records, 1919-2005 (majority within 1960-1979)

41.2 linear feet (in 43 boxes) — 1 oversize folder

Correspondence, topical files, photographs, and printed material relating to the operation and activities of the department, primarily after 1960 during the administrations of Warner Rice, Russell A. Fraser, John L. Styan, Jay L. Robinson, John R. Knott, Robert Weisbuch, and Martha Vicinus; also include scattered files before 1960 and after 1979.

The bulk of the records of the Department of English Language and Literature are from the years 1960 to 1979 and generally coincide with the chairmanships of Warner Rice, Russell Fraser, John Styan, and Jay Robinson. The records primarily document the internal workings of the department and its relationship with other units in the university. The majority of the records were created by the department itself and consist of minutes of committee and faculty meetings, correspondence, department reviews, course outlines, position requests, and newsletters and publications.

The records of the Department of English Language and Literature are divided into seven series: Correspondence, Topical Files, Photographs, Executive Committee, Chair's Files, Presentations, and Faculty Files.


Edward Nicholas and Dollie Ann Cole papers, 1829-2016 (majority within 1960-1977)

19 linear feet — 2 oversize boxes — 1 film reel — 1 oversize folder

Edward (Ed) Nicholas Cole was a President of General Motors Corporation and highly influential automotive engineer. His wife Dollie Ann was a well-known philanthropist and socialite in Michigan and Texas. Collection include correspondence, reports, technical records, speech transcripts, genealogical papers, photographs, audiovisual materials and scrapbooks.

The Edward Nicholas and Dollie Ann Cole papers contain materials from influential automotive exectuive Edward Nicholas Cole and his wife Dollie Ann Cole. The collection has been organized into two series:

The Edward Nicholas Cole series contains correspondence, business records, reports, photographs, audiovisual materials, transcripts, and blueprints. The series has been divided into four subseries: the Correspondence subseries contains personal and professional letters, the Project Files subseries includes documents related to Cole's career with General Motors, Chevrolet, Checker Motors Corporation and other projects. The Speeches and Appearences subseries chronicles Cole's public speaking engagements in the early 1970s and the Personal Materials subseries contains photographs, audiovisual materials and other materials related to Cole's family and recreational interests.

The Dollie Ann Cole series contains correspondence, papers, photographs and scrapbooks. The series has been organized into two subseries: the Correspondence series which contains letters dated between 1968-1976 and the Topical files series which includes materials related to Cole's charitable and community work, her media appearances and other pursuits.


Gerhard L. Weinberg papers, 1957-1973

7 linear feet — 1 phonograph record

Professor of history at University of Michigan; Democratic Party files and records of his University of Michigan activities.

The Gerhard L. Weinberg collection is comprised of two series: Democratic Party activities and interests, and University of Michigan activities. The Democratic Party papers concern Ann Arbor, Washtenaw County, and state politics. Issues documented include the passage of a fair housing law in Ann Arbor, and his interest in the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, 1964-1965.


Gilbert and Sullivan Society (University of Michigan) records, 1947-2011

22.5 linear feet (in 26 boxes) — 9 oversize volumes

University of Michigan group established in 1946 devoted to production of Gilbert and Sullivan operettas. Records include production files with programs, photographs, reviews and newspaper clippings, and scattered production notes and memoranda; topical files relating to the Society, its friends organization, and its publication; slides of productions; Society newsletter, "Gasbag"; posters; phonorecords, tapes, and videos of productions.

The records of UMGASS have been divided into ten series: Slides, Topical Files, Production Files, Posters, Memorabilia Volumes, Magnetic Tape Recordings, Sound Recordings, Audiotapes, Videotapes, and Scrapbooks. Because materials on one production can include photographs, scrapbooks, recordings, or slides- all of which live within different boxes of the collection -- a directory has been compiled in the Production Files series. The directory lists the year and title of the UMGASS production for which the library has materials and a lettered key exists that denotes the physical existence and location of materials within the collection.


Hanuman Books Records, 1978-1996 (majority within 1986-1994)

16 boxes, 16 linear feet

Hanuman Books was founded by Raymond Foye and Francesco Clemente in 1986. The press published small handmade books, primarily of works by contemporary avant-garde writers and rare translations. The administrative and editorial functions were housed in New York's Chelsea Hotel, while printing and binding were done in Madras, India. Through correspondence, invoices, manuscripts, typescripts, artwork, audiotapes, printed ephemera, photographs and books, this collection documents the founding of Hanuman Books, the administration of a small press, Indian printing practices, San Francisco’s North Beach and New York’s Lower East Side art scenes, Beat poetry, the Naropa Institute, contemporary music and film, and gay culture.

The Hanuman Books Records include correspondence, invoices, manuscripts, typescripts, books, art work, audio material, printed material, photographs, and other assorted material. The twenty linear feet of records span the years 1978 to 1996, with the bulk of the material falling between 1986 and 1994. Subjects documented in the collection include the founding of Hanuman Books, the administration of a small New York press, Indian printing, twentieth- century publishing, San Francisco’s North Beach and New York’s Lower East Side literary and art scenes, Beat poetry, the Naropa Institute, music, film, gay men in the 1980s and 1990s, and gay male literature. The Records are arranged in six series: Administrative Files (1986-1994), Publication Series (1986-1994), Raymond Foye Files (1978-1996), Mixed Media (1980s-1990s), Photographs (1970s-1990s), and Printed Material (1970s-1994).

Note: The Special Collections Library also holds a complete set of all the titles printed by Hanuman Books. To make these Hanuman Books imprints more accessible, the books were removed from the Records and individually cataloged. A listing of all of the titles follows the Scope and Content Note in the Related Material section.


Institute for Social Research (University of Michigan) records, 1936-2017 (scattered) (majority within 1946-2010)

143.8 linear feet (in 146 boxes) — 54.83 GB (online)

The Institute for Social Research (ISR), an interdisciplinary center for social science research, was created in 1949 when the Research Center for Group Dynamics (founded at Massachusetts Institute of Technology) joined the university's Survey Research Center. ISR houses the Center for Political Studies (CPS), Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR), Population Studies Center (PSC), Research Center for Group Dynamics (RCGD), and the Survey Research Center (SRC). Records document the founding and development of ISR and its related centers and programs and include audiovisual materials, minutes, correspondence, topical files, reports, and proposals. Administrative records include governance committees and director's files. Records of the Program for Research on Black Americans (PRBA) consist of grant proposals, survey instruments, focus group transcriptions, correspondence, bulletins, and internal governance records created under the auspices of PRBA and its various projects. Records of the Research Center for Group Dynamics are primarily the papers of director Kurt Lewin, including manuscripts and talks. Survey Research Center records consist largely of proposal and project files, although they also include faculty oral histories. The records of the Population Studies Center consist of lectures from its founder, Dr. Ronald Freedman, while the Center for Political Studies contains one binder of material from the American National Election Survey conducted in 1980.

The Institute for Social Research (ISR) records are dated from 1936-2017 (scattered) and consist of 143.8 linear feet (in 146 boxes) and digital files (online). Materials in this record group include audiovisual material, committee files (which include minutes and agendas), correspondence, directors' files, oral histories, publications, reports, and topical files. These records document the founding and subsequent development of ISR as well as its centers and programs, particularly the Program for Research on Black Americans (PRBA) and the Survey Research Center (SRC). The records also provide an overview of ISR's administration and the evolution of social science survey research methodology.

There are gaps in the records, which can be addressed in part through the papers of Rensis Likert, Angus Campbell, Dorwin P. Cartwright, and Philip E. Converse—all of which are held at the Bentley Historical Library (BHL). When viewed in conjunction with other ISR-related personal papers in the Bentley Historical Library, a rich and detailed picture of the growth of ISR as a center and the social science research discipline emerges.


Jeep Holland papers, 1943-1998

12 linear feet (in 13 boxes) — 1.5 GB (online) — 2 digital audiovisual files

Hugh "Jeep" Holland was the founder of the A-Square Record label in Ann Arbor in 1967, and consequently became an integral part of the southeast Michigan music scene in the late 1960s and early 1970s. The collection documents, in papers, photographs and sound recordings, Jeep's personal life, interests, and career.

The Jeep Holland papers date from his youth in the late 1940s up to his death in 1998, and document his personal life, his education, and his career, particularly the record label and production company he founded, A-Square Records. The collection is comprised of the following series: Administrative, Artist Files, Personal Files, Realia, Sound Recordings, and Visual.


John Teachout phonograph record collection, 1950-1964, undated

67 phonograph records (in 3 boxes) — 77 digital audio files


The John Teachout collection consists of phonograph records produced by his Idiom Recording Company. Several of the records are of local Ann Arbor or University of Michigan performances. In addition to music, some of the records are of dramatic readings. A few of the identifications are uncertain as they were taken from hand-written labels.


Louis A. Weil papers, 1904-1952

1 linear foot — 2 oversize volumes — 3 phonograph records — 2.14 GB

Editor and publisher of the Port Huron Times Herald. Scrapbooks, correspondence, and photographs concerning his newspaper career and other Port Huron, Michigan, activities.

The collection is composed of four series: Correspondence; Miscellaneous; Scrapbooks; and Audio-Visual materials. One of the scrapbooks contains letters received from William Lyon Phelps, H. L. Mencken, Edgar A. Guest, Chase S. Osborn, Frank Murphy, Theodore Roosevelt and Arthur H. Vandenberg.